Moving on from Trump’s speech

There have been many interpretations of one of the most picked over speeches in history, President Trump’s inauguration speech.

Some see it as a unifying speech for all American people (that is, the United States of American people, not the other North Americans, the Central Americans or the South Americans).

Others think that it targets white Americans and alienates others.

While the speech will have been very carefully crafted and checked before going to air it is impossible to prevent negative interpretations. While many people only see good in President Trump, many others only see evil.

Trump has spoken publicly a lot over the past two years, through the Republican primaries, through the presidential campaign, and since then leading up to his inauguration.

He has talked and talked and talked the talk.

Now it’s time for him to walk the walk. Trump is president, that’s a done deal. Now the real dealing begins. He acknowledged this in his speech:

The time for empty talk is over. Now arrives the hour of action.

We won’t know how he will be as President until we see what he actually does. It may take years to get a good idea whether his radical ideas and unconventional approach works or faisl.

There will be some some successes and some failures. The US and the world waits, with some hoping the pluses outweigh the minuses, and others in dread.

If Trump is true to his word his biggest battle won’t be with immigrants or ISIS or China or Russia, it will be Washington.

How Washington reacts will have a major influence on Trump’s presidency. Washington is probably the biggest bureaucracy in the world.

Saying ‘drain the swamp’ is easy, and it was a successful campaign slogan.

Draining the excesses and inefficiencies, while maintaining and rebuilding a functioning capital, will be a massive task.

Trump has promised to give power to the people.

What truly matters is not which party controls our government, but whether our government is controlled by the people. January 20th 2017, will be remembered as the day the people became the rulers of this nation again.

The people have never been the rulers of the nation, they just get to vote occasionally.

The people, or at least some of the people, voted for Trump’s biggest promise – to give them power, for Washington to listen to them and work for them.

This is Trump’s biggest challenge.

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61 Comments

  1. Alan Wilkinson

     /  22nd January 2017

    Good post, PG. Yes, the world waits to see what results from all the words.

    Reply
  2. Duperez

     /  22nd January 2017

    One of the most picked over speeches in history was there for all to see and hear. What it all meant subject to interpretation and the future.

    The irony of one of the most picked over speeches and interactions in our history not being available in any reliable form yet producing a seething mass of opinion.

    Shows that though some New Zealanders are carried away by the Trump thing, Washington is breakfast but Waiheke Island is dinner.

    Reply
  3. Alan Wilkinson

     /  22nd January 2017
    Reply
  4. Europe is nervous. This comment from the Guardian’s reprise on what various media were reporting:
    “European media were virtually unanimous in their assessment that an alliance between Trump and Putin will have harmful consequences for Europe. Portugal’s Público commented: “If Trump succeeds in accomplishing his Russian policy, the first ‘casualty’ will be Europe. It will be marginalised. It will drift apart.”

    Trump’s ambivalent comments about NATO’s relevance has added to fears about what will be the criteria he will use to judge whether NATO members contributions as adequate thus permitting the US to go to their aid if they are attacked. Much closer to home, while New Zealand is not a “member” of NATO, NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen and John Key, New Zealand’s Prime Minister, pledged closer security cooperation after signing a new partnership cooperation accord at NATO headquarters on 4 June 2012. So this begs the question, can New Zealand which is no longer an “Ally”, merely a “close friend” (Obama Speak), still rely on the US to provide the foundation of the New Zealand Defence Strategy, and what will Trump think of the closer relations the NZ Defence Forces seek with China, and vice versa?

    Factually, New Zealand’s Defence doctrine has to be based on “Guerrilla warfare tactics” such as pursued by Vietnam, because we lack any modern defence capacity with modern combat power capabilities. We do compete with the best in Infantry, NZSAS and Artillery competence, but lack air superiority and air defence capabilities. So, what do we do about this? Keep trading with everyone and try not to get out of step with our friends like the US and Israel, huh, Mr Mc Cully?

    Reply
    • Alan Wilkinson

       /  22nd January 2017

      Yes, BJ, nimble diplomacy is incumbent on small nations like ours. I think we are in a pretty good space though. The UK-US axis will be strengthened for us to ride on. We have good relations with China and should strengthen those with India. We are always friends with Oz when facing the world. And as ever distance is a friend as well as a problem.

      Reply
  5. Gezza

     /  22nd January 2017

    Copied over from the Women’s Rights March thread because possibly more relevant here.
    …….
    Well, embarrassment, Aljazeera midday news has just reported some bizarre events of today related to The DOTUS.

    Firstly he has given a rather unusually egocentric & odd address to the CIA in which he claimed nobody has more respect for them than “Donald J Trump”, and apparently, for some obscure reason, that IT DID NOT RAIN DURING HIS INAUGURAL ADDRESS despite mutliple cameras revealing that it did, enough for some people to raise umbrellas at the time.

    Secondly, his brand new Press Secretary delivered a somewhat strained press briefing during which he asserted, aggressively, that the size of the crowd attending The DOTUS’s inaugural address had been viciously understated by the hostile msm, and that it was in fact the biggest inaugural crowd EVER. PERIOD ! 😳

    Reply
    • Alan Wilkinson

       /  22nd January 2017

      Reads differently here, G:

      Trump’s press secretary lets rip
      Sean Spicer’s first press conference as Donald Trump’s official spokesman was a lively affair.

      He used his appearance before journalists to round on the press over reports that Mr Trump had removed a bust of Martin Luther King from the Oval Office – which he emphatically denied.

      White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer
      White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer CREDIT: ALEX WONG/GETTY IMAGES
      The new press secretary was also unhappy at coverage of the size of the crowd attending Mr Trump’s inauguration, which appeared to be considerably smaller than that for Barack Obama in 2009.

      However Mr Spicer accused the media of “working to minimise the enormous support” Mr Trump had. The reports, he said, were “shameful and wrong”.

      10:35pm
      Massachusetts senator Elizabeth Warren calls for fightback
      One of Mr Trump’s most vocal critics, left wing Massachusetts senator Elizabeth Warren, said the sight of the billionaire being sworn into office was a sight “now burned into my eyes forever.”

      Speaking in Boston Senator Warren, who many Democrats wish had challenged Hillary Clinton for the nomination, was determined to rally resistance against the new president.

      “We can whimper, we can whine, or we can fight back. Me? I’m here to fight back,” she said. “We come here to stand shoulder to shoulder to make clear: We are here, we will not be silent, we will not play dead, we will fight for what we believe in.”

      9:42pm
      Meanwhile, the president is addressing the CIA
      On his first full day in office Mr Trump visited CIA headquarters in Langey, Virignia to build bridges with the agency.

      Speaking to 400 members of the CIA he denied any “feud” with them. He said: “I love you, I respect you you, and you’re going to be leading the charge.

      “I’m with you 1,000 per cent. We are all on the same wave length.”

      Mr Trump added: “We have to get rid of Isis. Radical Islamic terrorism has to be eradicated off the face of the Earth. This is evil. We are going to end it.”

      He called Mr Pompeo a “total star” and said Democrats were “doing little political games” by delaying his confirmation as CIA Director.

      http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2017/01/21/donald-trump-day-two-us-president-gets-work-undoing-obamacare/

      Reply
      • Gezza

         /  22nd January 2017

        Hopefully full video clips of both the entire CIA address and the Press Briefing will be available by day’s end, Al. I cannot attest to the veracity of my above report as I have not yet seen the actual video evidence. The “did not rain” claim seems particularly odd. It needs verification, I may have misheard when & where it was said’ due to an open window & the roaring of the hurricane outside. We must all be alert for fake news and biased reporting.

        Reply
      • Conspiratoor

         /  22nd January 2017

        Just watched it Al. Sean channeling Donald. Wouldn’t describe it as ‘lively’ because the missiles only went one way. As soon as it was over Sean fled no doubt leaving the press a little shell shocked. Well worth a watch though

        Reply
        • Gezza

           /  22nd January 2017

          I second that. Well worth the five minures. What a buffalo dung-exuding little shite he’s going to be. White House press briefings look likely to be superbly entertaining exercises in mutual disbelief & antagonism.

          Reply
          • Alan Wilkinson

             /  22nd January 2017

            Link?

            Reply
          • Gezza

             /  22nd January 2017

            Hold your horses … I had to find it again after an FiP Chrome crash:
            http://www.vox.com/2017/1/21/14347812/trump-press-briefing-sean-spicer

            Reply
            • Gezza

               /  22nd January 2017

              Ps: * 5 minures = 5 minutes or 5 manures, viewers’ choice.

            • Alan Wilkinson

               /  22nd January 2017

              Thanks. Good sport all right. The press are not going to have an easy ride for the next four years but it will be entertaining and much of it will be on Trump’s terms, not theirs. There will be a lot of squawking as well as the tweeting.

            • Conspiratoor

               /  22nd January 2017

              Everything is a negotiation to Trump. Here he is softening the media up by putting them on the back foot from the beginning. He wants them to crawl into his favour. It won’t be long before they will view the occasional crumb thrown at them as a positive thing. Look for the olive branch when the balance of power has shifted and they are his lap dogs

          • Conspiratoor

             /  22nd January 2017

            If Sean was a dog G what breed do you think? Let’s see if you and I agree on something

            Reply
            • Gezza

               /  22nd January 2017

              Pug dog.

            • Conspiratoor

               /  22nd January 2017

              Bull mastiff crossed with Jack Russell. He looks like one of those short guys who struts up to the bar with his chest out and you just know he’s going to be pummeling some poor bastard 5 minutes later.

            • Gezza

               /  22nd January 2017

              Nope, a lot of snarling, growling & barking, and then runs & hides if there’s any growling back.

            • Conspiratoor

               /  22nd January 2017

              Hmmm, possibly. We will see. Is it just me or does Donald’s team look like it’s suffering from testosterone overload?

            • Gezza

               /  22nd January 2017

              Melania may be on migraine medication already. She’s got to listen to the boasting & then the outrage.

            • MaureenW

               /  22nd January 2017

              @ Conspiratoor
              Jeepers, I think that’s a body-double of KC. I’ve seen other shots of her and she appears quite feminine.

          • Gezza

             /  22nd January 2017

            Commencing search for video record of full Trump address to CIA today.
            1519 hours.

            Reply
        • Gezza

           /  22nd January 2017

          Speech @ CIA HQ

          Reply
          • Gezza

             /  22nd January 2017

            Far canal. Scary.

            Reply
          • patupaiarehe

             /  22nd January 2017

            WTF?. Just WTF???…I’m not even going to say what I’m thinking ATM…

            Reply
            • Alan Wilkinson

               /  22nd January 2017

              Hilarious contrast with the speech Obama would have made. This was a businessman talking to a team he needs to do a job for him under a new manager he has just appointed. He also needed to insulate them from media criticism. I think that is the simple translation.

            • patupaiarehe

               /  22nd January 2017

              It isn’t funny at all Alan. I can see where he is going with this…

    • Alan Wilkinson

       /  22nd January 2017

      So Sean didn’t say it was the biggest Inaugural crowd ever, he said it was the biggest audience including world-wide TV/video. False news from AJ.

      Reply
      • Gezza

         /  22nd January 2017

        The dangers of 3rd hand reporting in a hurricane, possibly. Audience was not defined by Aj, so yes, misleading indeed. Aj has not been Trump-friendly in its coverage over the last months, quite the reverse. Its coverage of things Americana has got more and more like an Entertainment Tonight format over the past year or so.

        Reply
        • Conspiratoor

           /  22nd January 2017

          Would you expect anything less from a propaganda outlet for the Qatari government with a foreign policy unashamably islamic. One which actively promotes the Muslim Botherhood, an organisation Trump is about to add to the list of drone targets

          Reply
    • Alan Wilkinson

       /  22nd January 2017

      He didn’t say it didn’t rain at all during his address. He said he got a few drops when it started and it poured at the end of it but not during it. Probably a bit of poetic licence there.

      Reply
      • “Probably a bit of poetic licence there.”

        A president who makes all sorts of shit up and then accuses others of spreading lies and fake news is not a poet.

        Reply
        • Alan Wilkinson

           /  22nd January 2017

          No, he’s not a poet but he is an entertainer. I don’t think you are an objective observer.

          Reply
          • “I don’t think you are an objective observer.”

            I could say that about you Alan. I’m surprised how defensive you are of Trump’s behaviour and strategies. It’s scary how many people are defending anything he does and amplifying his attack lines.

            Reply
          • Alan Wilkinson

             /  22nd January 2017

            I don’t mind you saying it about me. I do play devil’s advocate somewhat when I think one side is seriously exaggerating and distorting the truth. If you watch the video he was more or less joking as he was talking about the rain. No-one except people with an agenda (I think that includes you) would take it seriously.

            Reply
            • Kitty Catkin

               /  22nd January 2017

              I don’t think that he does make jokes. Narcissists seldom seem to have a real sense of humour.

              Nobody with a sense of humour would have had themselves on the cover of a golfing magazine with what was either someone else’s body (a much younger, fitter, less bulging someone) or the photoshop to end all photoshops. Did he really think that people would believe that that was him ?

  6. Yep, I bet Native American’s along with many other minorities are really feeling the “unifying” theme of Trump’s inaugural speech …

    https://www.quora.com/If-Trump-wins-presidency-how-will-Native-Americans-be-affected

    http://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-trump-tribes-insight-idUSKBN13U1B1

    Reply
    • Alan Wilkinson

       /  22nd January 2017

      Identity politics was a prime casualty of the election, PZ.

      Reply
      • That’s Right Alan, if you are not White Anglo-Saxon Protestant (or Catholic) …

        Which really only means a different identity politics was created or recreated …

        Reply
        • Alan Wilkinson

           /  22nd January 2017

          No evidence of that, PZ. Just because special favours are not to be handed out doesn’t mean anyone is oppressed.

          Reply
    • MaureenW

       /  22nd January 2017

      Obama delivered nothing more than tokenism to native Americans – he was too busy shipping in and establishing Muslim settlements

      Reply
      • And don’t Native Americans and others know it MaureenW … !? (see my quora link)

        Reply
        • Gezza

           /  22nd January 2017

          Both links are speculative and the last indicates a willingness to engage in dialogue & protect local sovereignty, I thought, though I agree there may be cause for worry for the indigenous nations.

          The first link includes this: “He has recently flirted with anti Semitic statements.”
          Unless I am wrong his son-in-law Kushner is Jewish & his daughter Ivanka is a convert to Judaism.

          Reply

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